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Oakville Grocery in the Domain is open

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My focus when it comes to grocery stores is the quality of ingredients and in this respect it appears pretty similar to the mediocrity of Central Market and Whole Foods.

Could you elaborate a little more on this?


i'll preface this by saying based on my limited experience it's difficult to find what i consider really good fresh ingredients almost anywhere in the states with a handful of exceptions. and really great perishable ingredients aren't often available on the scale that a central market or whole foods would need. that said, it doesn't help that those places sometimes don't treat potentially good ingredients correctly.


in addition, i don't use these stores the way most folks do. i don't buy prepared foods or the convenience items.


where to start? invariably wilted bulk mesclun, wilted herbs, aside from cremini, button, and occasionally shitake, mushrooms are rarely in good shape, despite (or perhaps because of) astronomical pricing. central market's tasteless holland produce which has costmetic value only. at least central market makes an effort to sell fresh cut herbs. and they occasionally have good tomatoes in season. and whole foods at least reaches out to local farms (as does central market), which is a plus but doesn't guarantee great stuff. tasteless stone fruits. thanks to goodflow, both places have good orange juice.


aside from one whole foods location on the LES of manhattan, the cheese programs at both places are misguided. pre-sliced, pre-wrapped cheeses that are rarely sold at peak. aside from pure luck, parmigiano, and a few other cheeses, i've stopped buying at both places. too many ammoniated specimens. give me a dozen cheeses in great shape, cut to order and stored properly, over a selection of 150 cheeses that leave me rolling the dice.


the charcuterie selection is pretty standard... not-even-mediocre boar's head and molinari, etc. the in-house turkey, etc. is fine. whole foods has catapulted to the top with the strength of 3 or 4 bertolli salamis, which were added recently. though not in all locations. another example of a few items in good shape trumping a broad selection of stuff like applegate farms.


i don't have time to go on, but try finding a truly great strip steak or ribeye at either. i'm talking prime, dry-aged. the great stuff just isn't available retail down here. even in new york it takes a trip to lobel's or d&d.


i gotta wrap this up. these are the places i shop. i just wish there was a superior option. i know they're better than what used to be available, etc., etc. i'm not arguing that. i'm only saying that on the whole i find what's available to be mediocre with few exceptions.


don't get me started on the bread.

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